The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) has released the interim report of the Code of Practice Review and has invited submissions from stakeholders.
ICA CEO Rob Whelan, said the industry was committed to ensuring the Code Review was as thorough as possible while also remaining practical. He added that the review would ensure the Code remained the benchmark for industry self-regulation in Australia and responded to recent external developments impacting the general insurance industry. The Code, introduced in 1994 and previously reviewed four times, commits insurers to mandatory standards of service above and beyond their regulatory obligations.
“The Code represents the general insurance industry’s strong commitment to improving consumer outcomes,” he said. The interim report is the result of extensive consultation with a range of organisations and bodies including consumer representatives, the ICA’s Consumer Liaison Forum, ICA member committees, the Code Governance Committee and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.
He continued, “The interim report has identified priority areas for potential inclusion in the Code, including disclosure, claims investigation, family violence, how insurers interact with vulnerable consumers and amendments directed at facilitating ASIC’s approval of the Code. We now invite submissions from stakeholders on the interim report and propose an eight-week consultation period to ensure there is time for proper consideration.”
ICA has appointed former ASIC GM and Cameron Ralph Khoury MD Phil Khoury to provide independent oversight of the current review. His role includes advising on whether the interim report appropriately takes into account submissions received and external developments.
The current Code is available here and feedback can be communicated via the review website by January 8, 2018. The ICA has also communicated that they will conduct issue-specific workshops with stakeholders to further discuss the practical impacts of the proposals raised in the interim report.